Swedish Health System Board of Trustees
R. Omar Riojas, JD
Chair, Board of Trustees
R. Omar Riojas joined the Swedish Board in March 2015. He is a partner at Goldfarb & Huck Roth Riojas, PLLC. Omar concentrates in complex and high stakes commercial litigation in state and federal court, including complex business and tort litigation, securities, consumer, wage‐and‐hour class actions, and corporate governance litigation. Omar also has experience in litigation concerning employment, insurance, financial institutions, and real estate. His clients have included Fortune 500 companies, small businesses and individuals as plaintiffs and defendants in state and federal court.
Omar has been recognized by Washington Super Lawyers as among “The Top 100” attorneys in Washington. He has also repeatedly been named a “Super Lawyer” and “Rising Star” by Washington Super Lawyers. Omar has been included in The Best Lawyers in America for Commercial Litigation.
Prior to forming Goldfarb & Huck, Omar was a business litigator at large defense firms (DLA Piper and Heller Ehrman). Omar graduated from Stanford Law School and from the University of Washington with distinction. Following law school, he was a Judicial Extern Clerk for the Honorable Ricardo S. Martinez of the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington.
Kristen Swanson, PhD, RN
Vice Chair, SHS Board of Trustees
Kristen Swanson joined the Swedish Board in January 2015. She is Dean of the College of Nursing at Seattle University. She previously served as Dean and Alumni Distinguished Professor at the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Nursing and Associate Chief Nursing Officer for Academic Affairs at UNC Hospitals. Her research focuses on caring, responses to miscarriage and interventions to promote healing after early pregnancy loss. Her caring theory has been used to guide practice, education and research in schools and health care settings around the world. She was the first University of Washington Medical Center Endowed Professor in Nursing Leadership. She has been a visiting professor in the United States, England, Thailand, Taiwan and Sweden, and is frequently invited to consult on strategies to create and sustain a culture of patient centered caring in health care settings. She is an alumnus of the Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellows Program – an advanced leadership initiative for nurses in senior executive roles who aspire to lead and shape the future U.S. health care system.
Robert M. Andrews (Rob) was born and raised in Seattle, WA. He founded Northwest Retail Partners, Ltd. in September of 1992 and Verus Partners, LLC and Verus Holdings in April of 2005 (a Real Estate development company with an office in Seattle and Phoenix which currently has developments in various stages in the states of WA, OR, CA, AZ and MT). Andrews Holdings was established in 2015 as a holding company for various investments.
Andrews’ more than 25 years of experience in commercial real estate includes strategic planning, market penetration, retail development and leasing, project planning and disposition. Andrews continues to provide long‐term counsel/representation to a number of prominent companies including Whole Foods Market, Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond, Cost Plus World Market and Nordstrom Rack.
Andrews owns and (or) is developing office, retail and residential properties in excess of 2 million square feet. Prior to founding his various companies, Andrews worked with CB Commercial Real Estate Group, specializing in a variety of areas including finance, property management, appraisals, commercial real estate sales and leasing.
Andrews, through Andrews Holdings, is also a partner/investor in eight area restaurants, including The Wild Ginger (Seattle & Bellevue), The Triple Door, El Gaucho Steak House, Aqua and The Hardware Store on Vashon Island. Recently Andrews Holding purchased 15 acres of vineyard property in Walla Walla.
Andrews is a trustee of Swedish Health Services, a five hospital system where he serves on both the Capital/Finance and the Governance/Nominating committees, in addition to sitting on the board for Optimum Energy and the Wild Ginger Holding Company.
Rob received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Washington. He enjoys fly fishing, hunting, skiing and currently resides in Seattle. Rob and his wife Janie have been married 20 years and split their time between Seattle and Vashon Island. They have twin 18 year old boys. Jackson attends Occidental and is a pitcher on the baseball team. Nicholas attends the Business School at Seattle University and is a student coach/manager on the basketball team.
Meredith has lived in the Seattle area for the last 30 years. She attended Mercer Island High School and the University of Washington, where she earned a BA in Business Administration, with a concentration in marketing and accounting. Meredith took a year off between college and graduate school and worked at a commercial bank based in Bellevue, Washington. Meredith then attended law school at the University of Michigan, earning her JD in 2001.
Following law school, Meredith pursued a career in litigation. Meredith’s initial area of practice was insurance defense, which quickly narrowed to medical malpractice defense. From 2001-2002, Meredith worked as an associate for the Seattle office of the Spokane based firm, Keefe, King and Bowman, before moving to Kingman, Peabody, Fitzharris and Ringer, P.S., where she remained until 2008. Meredith than worked for Gibson Peabody, P.S. until 2010. Meredith represented hospitals and other health care facilities, as well as physicians, nurses, therapists, technicians and other health care providers during discovery, jury trial, private trial, mediation, settlement negations, MQAC hearings, depositions and appeals. Representative clients included Physician’s Insurance, Group Health Cooperative, Virginia Mason, Providence Hospital System and Aegis Senior Living. Meredith’s favorite parts of her practice were learning the medicine underlying her cases and working with health care providers as clients. Meredith also represented health care facilities and practitioners in insurance coverage disputes. Meredith additionally consulted on general risk management concerns, including the development and review of policies and procedures. Meredith was recognized twice as a Rising Star by Washington Super Lawyers in the area of medical malpractice defense.
Meredith served on Childhaven’s Board of Trustees from 2009-2016 and continued to serve on its Development Committee until 2020. Meredith has been on the Board of Epiphany School since 2015 and previously chaired its Governance Committee.
Meredith and her husband, Brandon, have two boys ages 10 and 12, who were both born at Swedish Hospital. Meredith spends her free time chasing her children and dogs all over Washington State and Montana.
Bobbie Berkowitz, PhD, RN, FAAN
Bobbie Berkowitz is the Dean and Professor Emerita of Nursing at Columbia University School of Nursing. She is Professor Emerita at the University of Washington School of Nursing where she served on faculty for 14 years.
Prior to her appointment as Dean at Columbia she was the Alumni Endowed Professor of Nursing and Chair of the Department of Psychosocial and Community Health and Adjunct Professor in the School of Public Health and Community Medicine at the University of Washington. Her primary research relates to public health systems, health disparities and health equity. Her major grant funding includes the NIH Center for the Advancement of Health Disparities Research (PI) and PI and Director of the National Program Office for Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Turning Point Initiative. Previous appointments include Deputy Secretary for the Washington State Department of Health and Chief of Nursing Services for the Seattle‐King County Department of Public Health.
Dr. Berkowitz has served on a number of boards including Hanford Environmental Health Foundation, Washington State Board of Health, Washington Health Care Commission, Washington State Academy of Science, New York Academy of Medicine, National Academy of Medicine Board on Population Health and Public Health Practice, Public Health Foundation and chair of the Board of Trustees of Group Health Cooperative. She is past President of the American Academy of Nursing and currently serves as a member of the Report Review Committee of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, the Board of Trustees for Swedish Health System in Washington State, the Advisory Board of the University of California Health System Board of Advisors and the University of Washington School of Nursing Board of Advisors. She holds a PhD in Nursing Science from Case Western Reserve University and Master of Nursing and Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Washington.
Rick Cantu - Redapt, Inc., CEO, President, & Co‐Founder
As the CEO and Co-founder of Redapt, Rick is responsible for leading the overall company vision, business strategy, product development, marketing approach and global operations. He’s built a collaborative and results oriented culture, which has maintained through more than 20 years of tremendous growth and success.
Redapt helps companies accelerate their business through innovation. Leveraging AI, machine learning, IoT, modern applications and infrastructure, we create hybrid and multi-cloud solutions tailored to the way your teams work. By embracing intelligent cloud technologies, your people can create new experiences for customers and prospects, multiply efficiencies and uncover competitive advantages. Not just another vendor, Redapt partnerships run deep to unleash innovation and explore new digital heights. Modernize. Innovate. Differentiate.
- Development of next generation solutions and strong thought leadership
- Partnership with clients and technology eco-system in driving insights on products for tomorrow’s business requirements
- 100% privately owned and operated
R. Guy Hudson, MD, MBA
Chief Executive Officer, Swedish Health Services
Dr. Guy Hudson serves as chief executive officer of Swedish Health Services, where he guides the vision of one of the Puget Sound region’s largest nonprofit health care systems. Dr. Hudson oversees the strategic direction and operations of the organization, ensuring that Swedish delivers on its mission of serving the needs of everyone in the community. He works closely with the organization’s leaders and caregivers to provide the highest‐quality care to Swedish’s patients and create a respectful workplace that values the contributions of every employee. Dr. Hudson assumed this role in early 2017.
During his tenure at Swedish, Dr. Hudson has served in various leadership positions across the organization. He joined Swedish in 2007 as a pediatric urologic surgeon and quickly began leading outreach and programs that transformed Swedish pediatric services. Dr. Hudson stewarded initiatives that improved caregiver engagement, patient care and operational workflow. Through his dedicated work with the pediatrics practice, Dr. Hudson developed a deep understanding of primary care, the emerging population health movement and the complexities of the acute care environment – learnings that inform his stewardship of the organization into the future.
Dr. Hudson was named chief of physician services for western Washington in 2016, focusing on medical group operations in the areas of provider engagement, patient satisfaction and financial, operational and quality performance. Previously, Dr. Hudson served as Swedish Medical Group’s chief medical officer.
Dr. Hudson came to Swedish from an academic practice at Oregon Health & Science University. He completed a fellowship at the University of California San Diego and a residency at Oregon Health & Science University. He is a graduate of Indiana University and the Indiana University School of Medicine.
Dr. Hudson has been recognized multiple times as one of Seattle’s and Portland’s Top Doctors, and he received the Patients’ Choice Award Compassionate Doctor Recognition from 2011 to 2014. He is passionate about delivering care to patients in areas that are medically underserved, including providing surgical care to children in Africa and serving as a Guatemala service representative with Providence Health International. Dr. Hudson serves on the Greater Seattle Partners Executive Council and is a member of the Community Development Roundtable of Seattle.
Mark Lowdermilk, MD
Dr. Mark Lowdermilk is a practicing OBGYN physician at Swedish First Hill, specializing in low- and high-risk obstetrical care and minimally-invasive robotic gynecological surgery. He is currently the System Chief of Staff of the five Swedish campuses and sits on the Swedish Board of Trustees.
Dr. Lowdermilk joined Healthcare for Women at Providence Hospital Medical Center in 1998, after graduating from the University of Washington’s OBGYN residency program. He has been with the same OBGYN group for 23 years – now called Swedish OBGYN Specialist, First Hill. He has traversed the many iterations of the Providence/Swedish affiliation and is currently employed by Swedish Medical Group. Dr. Lowdermilk is passionate about providing care for the underserved which was in part motivated by his parent’s 40 year commitment of service in Pakistan, India and Egypt.
Dr. Lowdermilk came to medicine after a fulfilling and rich career in the Performing Arts that spanned 15 years. He performed nationally and internationally and has both a BFA and MFA for the University of Utah where he also served as guest faculty. He maintained a close relationship with his performing arts roots during his medical school training at the same institution which allowed him to cultivate a humanistic approach to learning the science of medicine.
Dr. Lowdermilk has served as the System Chief of the OBGYN department for six years and was recently the Chair of the Medical Staff Quality Oversight Committee. He currently chairs the Medical Executive Committee.
Monica Pool Knox, MBA
Monica Pool Knox provides leadership to Microsoft’s cultural transformation initiatives through creating solutions that enable the organization to fully leverage the capabilities of it’s talent. In her role, Monica leads Microsoft’s global Career Management initiatives focused on internal talent movement, individual development planning, career planning, goal setting and org‐wide capability. In her role, she also leads the Talent Architecture practice, developing MSFT’s internal Talent Profile and other AI enabled data frameworks that facilitate activities such as talent movement, targeted learning, onboarding and mentorship. Prior to joining Microsoft, Monica was based in San Francisco where she led human resources for Global Media, Sales and Brand Strategy at Twitter.
Prior to Twitter, Monica held a number of senior HR roles with Sony and CBS Interactive, leading HR organizations in Marketing, Sales and Engineering businesses. Throughout her career, Monica has held executive HR positions at Fortune 50 companies including those previously mentioned, PepsiCo, The Walt Disney Company and Verizon. She has worked both in the US and Puerto Rico, leading HR for Verizon Wireless International in San Juan, PR. In addition to her professional roles, Monica has worked internationally through her non‐profit endeavors in Israel, Brazil, Nicaragua, Ghana, Costa Rica, Zimbabwe and Mexico. She is a dual US/German citizen and is bilingual in Spanish.
Most recently, Monica was named to the Board of Directors of Swedish Health Systems in Seattle. She also serves on the Board of Howard University’s School of Communications and the DreamSmart Academy, a non‐profit organization that builds leadership skills and financial acumen for young adults in moderate to low income communities. She was also recently named as one of the 2019 Most Influential Women in Corporate America by Savoy Magazine and is a member of the Executive Leadership Council (ELC), an organization consisting of some of the country’s most influential senior business executives focused on developing black C‐Suite and Corporate Board Directors.
With more than 25 years of experience in high performance organizations, she is often sought after as an industry thought leader and speaker on Talent and Leadership. She was recently interviewed by Forbes Magazine and published in their article, The 3 Ways HR organizations can Help their Companies Grow, featured in MSN.money’s (Portugal/Brazil) Management and Business Growth and interviewed as a featured guest on Jacob Morgan’s Future of Work podcast, The Changing Nature of People and Organizations.
Monica is a Consortium for Graduate Studies alumn with an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin in Marketing and BA from the University of California, Santa Barbara in Communications.
Diankha Linear, JD
Chair, Finance & Capital Projects Committee
Diankha Linear is a senior executive with more than 20 years leading across highly regulated technology, logistics and retail industries. Her career reflects proven success in developing, driving and executing on business strategies for Fortune 500 companies and technology startups. She also brings board governance experience having served as an officer on numerous boards and through advising corporate boards, including the environmental, social and corporate governance, executive, compensation and audit committees.
Diankha is currently a corporate officer and early member of the executive team at one of Seattle’s fastest growing tech startups and most efficient digital freight network, Convoy, Inc. At Convoy, she serves as General Counsel & Corporate Secretary executing on the organization’s corporate transactions, including Seattle’s largest venture capital financing transaction in over a decade ($400M;$2.75B valuation), regulatory affairs, people initiatives, compliance strategy and other large scale initiatives centered around market disruption and hyper-growth scaling.
Prior to joining Convoy, Diankha spent nearly a decade in leadership roles at Fortune 500 companies, Nordstrom ($15B) and Expeditors International of Washington ($8B), where she drove global growth objectives, corporate deals/M&A transactions, people planning, risk management/enterprise-wide compliance programs and innovative business solutions for complex international regulatory challenges. The early years of her career were spent as big firm antitrust, complex commercial, constitutional and employment law counsel. Diankha is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School and the University of Washington.
Ms. Linear’s strategy and leadership expertise is built on 16 years of military education and training, where she served as an Army (Airborne) Logistics & Transportation, Civil Affairs - Special Operations Forces Unit and Judge Advocate General (JAG) officer. She is a licensed U.S. Customs Broker.
Throughout her career, Diankha has been an active leader and advocate for equity, youth and education. She currently serves as a trustee, officer and executive committee member of Rainier Scholars, an organization that has created transformational educational opportunities for highly motivated aspiring college students. She has also served as board chairperson of Habitat for Humanity Seattle/South King County, Lake Washington Girls Middle School and the Loren Miller Bar Association. Diankha was recently featured as a Daring Woman on the December 2020 cover of Seattle Business Magazine.
Tanya Sorensen, MD
Tanya Sorensen, MD joined the Swedish Board in 2018. She is a practicing maternal fetal medicine physician at Swedish and has been Swedish’s executive director for Women’s Services since 2014. As co‐director of the Swedish Center for Perinatal Studies (1993‐2016) and clinical faculty at the University of Washington, she authored or co‐authored over 60 peer‐reviewed research publications. She served on the executive committee for the Washington State Obstetric Association for five years. She has been a member of the Providence‐affiliated Institute for Systems Biology scientific advisory board since 2016. At Providence she serves on both the Women and Children’s Leadership Council and the Research Leadership Council. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Bucknell University and is a graduate of the University of Washington School of Medicine. She and her husband have two adult daughters, both living in Seattle.
Alvin Sturdivant, EdD
Dr. Alvin Sturdivant is the Vice President for Student Development at Seattle University. In this role he serves as a member of the senior leadership team and provides visionary and administrative leadership for a number of key departments towards fostering student success and an integrated learning experience. Prior to joining Seattle University, Dr. Sturdivant was the Director of Housing and Residence Life at Saint Louis University in St. Louis, MO. Prior to joining the Division of Student Development at Saint Louis University, he served as the Associate Director of Residential Life at the University of Vermont where he was also an adjunct faculty member in the Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration program and an instructor at the Community College of Vermont.
Dr. Sturdivant received his EdD in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies with an emphasis in Higher Education Administration from the University of Vermont and his Masters of Education and Bachelors of Art in Psychology at North Carolina State University. His scholarly and professional interests include examining the effects of oppression and discriminatory practices in college communities, exploring the experiences of students of color in higher education, examining campus climate in the context of bias related acts and behaviors, and exploring the experiences of African American men in higher education.
Jonathan Sugarman, MD, MPH - Chief Executive Officer of Global to Local
Jonathan R. Sugarman, M.D., M.P.H. is CEO of Global to Local, a Seattle‐based nonprofit whose mission is to advance health equity and improve health in U.S. communities through application of best practices from around the world.
Prior to his service at Global to Local, he served for nearly two decades as President and CEO of Qualis Health, a Seattle‐based non‐profit recognized as a national leader in population health. Dr. Sugarman regularly serves as an advisor for government and private sector quality measurement and improvement initiatives. He is a frequent speaker to regional and national audiences on topics related to health care quality and accelerating health care transformation through implementation of models such as the medical home. He has authored over 90 papers and book chapters on topics such as diabetes mellitus, health problems of American Indians and quality of care among Medicare beneficiaries.
He has served as a leader in a number of professional organizations, including as President of the American Health Quality Association, President of the Washington Academy of Family Physicians and Chair of the American Academy of Family Physicians Commission on Quality. He served on the Executive Committee of the American Medical Association-convened Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement.
Dr. Sugarman is a graduate of Harvard College, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the University of Washington School of Public Health and Community Medicine. He serves as clinical professor in the departments of Family Medicine and Global Health at the University of Washington.
Simone Vincent, MSN, RN, ARNP
Simone Vincent serves as a member of the Swedish System Advanced Practice Clinicians (APC) Medical Director Team. She joined Swedish in 2014 as a Nurse Practitioner for the Swedish Hospital Medicine (SHM) team, was appointed to the SHM Advisory Committee, then became the SHM APC Medical Director in 2019. She developed a formalized APC onboarding program for Hospital Medicine with notable improvement in APC satisfaction, retention, and clinical performance. Simone also represents APCs on the Swedish Council of the Bylaws, is a member of the Swedish Workplace Violence Prevention Committee, and the Providence Workplace Safety Committee. She is passionate about supporting our caregivers, providing patient centered care with compassion and grace, and transitioning vulnerable moments into a journey of healing.
She has practice experience within inpatient and outpatient settings. A proud alumna of the Seattle University School of Nursing, 2008. She is pursuing a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree in Leadership. She continues to contribute towards preceptorship for nursing and APC students. Simone strives to create and foster an environment of intellectual growth while supporting a culture of excellence and inclusivity.
She was raised in New Mexico where her family was intensely integrated in the art community. She lived with a National Living Cultural Treasure in Arita, Japan while her father studied porcelain pottery. As a Former Division I dual sport athlete and member of a U.S. National Basketball team, she remains active and supportive of youth sports. Her interests include gardening, pottery, reading, and the outdoors. She resides in Maple Valley with her husband, four children, and supports her nearby aging parents.